Originally written on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 10/21/14

ENGLEWOOD, CO - JULY 28: Former Tampa Bay safety John Lynch #47 of the Denver Broncos talks with reporters after the first full session of training camp at Dove Valley on July 28, 2004 in Englewood, Colorado. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
Heading into the first week of the NFL regular season, the replacement officials were a huge story. After one of the biggest blown calls in NFL history on Monday night, they have become national news. While the league has done everything in its power to stop players and coaches from berating the fill-in refs, analysts and broadcasters are no longer holding back. Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth led the way by ripping the calls in the Sunday night game, and Mike Tirico and Jon Gruden followed suit on Monday. Now we’re learning from former safety and current FOX NFL analyst John Lynch that the league wanted broadcasters to go easy on the replacement refs in Week 1. “I know Week 1 the league I think kind of duped every network in calling us and said ‘we’re close to a deal, so have your guys go easy.’ So that was kind of the edict from up top: go easy on these guys,” Lynch said during an appearance on “The Dan Patrick Show.” “[The league wasn't] telling us not to say anything, but ...
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